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The Girls of August Hardcover – July 8, 2014


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; First Edition edition (July 8, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446527955
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446527958
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 0.9 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (464 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #42,132 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Maddy, Rachel, Barbara, and Melinda met when their husbands were in medical school and started a tradition of spending a week at a beach house every August that lasted until Melinda died in an automobile accident. Years later, when Melinda’s husband remarries, they invite his new wife, a ditzy twentysomething nicknamed Baby, to join them and end up at her family’s home on the South Carolina coast. Petty jealousy is the reigning emotion, and Baby makes a point of flaunting her youth and beauty and playing up the fact that the other women are old enough to be her mother. Making matters worse, each of the women has a life-changing secret. Their anguish boils over during a storm, and all four must come together to survive. Siddons’ (Burnt Mountain, 2011) latest is a thoughtful portrait of women in crisis, the three older of them faced with an all-too-vivid reminder that they’re aging while the youngest matures, thanks to their shared experience, and all recognize that friendship is a sustaining force. Siddons’ many fans will feel right at home with this emotionally gripping, beach-themed read. --Nanette Donohue

Review

"One doesn't read Anne Rivers Siddons's books, one dwells in them."—Chicago Tribune

Bravura writing...This is Siddons's best, maybe the book she was born to write."—Stephen King (on Off Season)

"Anne Rivers Siddons's body of work is one of the most impressive in contemporary fiction. And, in her beautifully crafted and dazzling new novel OFF SEASON, Ms. Siddons delivers the goods more powerfully than ever. All her books are terrific, but this one is the best yet."—Pat Conroy

"The lyrical beauty of Siddons's writing shines...an elegant portrait of love, loss, longing; memories and mystery line the path to self-discovery in OFF SEASON....Siddons's fans will savor the story long after the last page has turned."—Charlotte Observer

"Siddons masterfully portrays growing up in a small town outside Atlanta...Even as they age, Siddons' characters focus on their sensations and needs and aspirations, but that single-mindedness coaxes readers to side with her central character. Anyone who appreciates the instant gratification of romance novels - 'Burnt Mountain' seems designed for a few days of beach reading - will be quickly taken in by the quiet and beautiful tomboy...When Thayer Wentworth figures out young that life's nastiest snarls may not all be loosened and smoothed and retied in neat bows, we fret with her. And when everything inevitably does start to work out, we are as relieved as she is."—The Associated Press (on BURNT MOUNTAIN)

"Siddons mixes in a touch of the supernatural to bring the novel to an exciting climax, but what's most appealing here is the layered family drama and the lush world Thayer inhabits...A master storyteller with a remarkable track record, bestselling Siddons returns to her signature Southern setting in her newest blend of emotional realism and a sliver of magic."—Booklist (on BURNT MOUNTAIN)

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Customer Reviews

Very weak plot and character development.
rwrourk
I read this book in one day because I kept hoping it would get better...it didn't.
Ms Winston
I felt like I was reading a book written by someone else pretending to be Siddons.
E Novak

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Nancy J. Mumford on July 8, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Pretty awful. No wonder this book took an extra year to be published - I don't think the author knew what to do with these characters or how to play out the story. Silly, unbelievable cardboard characters, a strange and completely unbelievable story with an awful ending. The whole thing played out like some kind of fever dream. I wouldn't recommend this to anyone. Very disappointing book by an author I used to really like.
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35 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Janet Reilly on July 9, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I thought about giving this book no stars but figured that since one of my favorite authors spent time writing it I'd at least give her one star for the effort of producing a book, even if it was the worst book she's ever written.
I can't reconcile that this is the same author who has written books I wanted to read over and over, like "Up Island". Her books typically have characters who literally spring from the page, who are so real I can see them and want to meet them. Her descriptive prose is generally so strong I feel I am at the place. I can't believe that she wrote such a piece of mindless dribble. She must have been under the gun to fulfill a contract with her publisher and decided to throw just any story line on a page. (I also can't believe I pre-ordered this and waited with such anticipation for it. Never again.)
Save the 9.99 or whatever it is we pay for an ebook. Wait till the library gets it and take it out then to assuage your curiosity. This is not worth the virtual ink it was written with. If I thought I could get a refund for it after I'd read it already I would try.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Zazu on July 10, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I remember the first time I was introduced to an ARS book. It was The Colony, and I thought it was a superb story. I was completely swept away when I came to the darker parts of the book, I just wasn't expecting any of it. I was totally taken by surprise. Her writing was like no other. She could take the most mundane scene, and evolve it into 3D visual effect. Her words were stunning. After that, I had to read all of ARS's books. Everyone of them. I was so excited when I received The Girls of August my kindle. I was hoping that ARS had found her way out of the miasma of Burnt Mountain. The words in The Girls of August are still stunning, but they just don't go anywhere. The story started above par, but I soon realized that I was more than 1/4 of the way through the book, and I was almost done! And as I got deeper into the story, I realized nothing happens . . . Nothing happens . . . Nothing happens . . . Ok, something happens, but I am not really sure what did happen . . . And then the book ends. Just like that! Where was the story? There was no character development. I felt absolutely nothing for any of these women. Plus, I thought the three older women, Barbara, Rachel and Madison were incredibly rude and condescending to Baby. If it was my house, I would have shown them the end of the pier and told them to have a nice swim back.
Writing this clearly bothers me because I truly do not want to say anything bad about a woman who has written some great books in her life! I mean, that is my dream! I know the book was suppose to come out in 2013 and was delayed a year. It is not even 300 pages. I truly hope ARS is not in poor health, but I do know she is closer to 80 than 75. Maybe it's time to rest on her laurels.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By H Kamin on July 9, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Horrible. It was an easy and quick read only because I couldn't wait to get away from it! The characters were flimsy; the situations ridiculous; the descriptions overly florid. Very disappointing.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Janice Pitts on July 10, 2014
Format: Hardcover
I just finished The Girls of August and am sorry I read it and sorrier that Ms. Siddons wrote it. I agree with most of the reviews here so will not be repetitious. I have long been an avid reader of her novels and am sorry that she is unable to write. I am not surprised at how bad this book is after reading her last novel. Again, its as if someone else wrote it. It is disjointed and the character development is horrible. While I am no prude I was surprised to see how many times she used the "F" word and also her use of "Jesus H. Christ". I find this beneath her and it makes the book trashy.
I assume Ms. Siddons had a book to finish to live up to her end of a contract and she hastily put this together. I am very surprised that a good editor did not squash this book and that a publishing company published it. Its very sad.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By rwrourk on July 9, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Not up to her usual literary standards. Very weak plot and character development. Just my opinion. What's your opinion?
Check it out for yourself.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Sandy Poo on July 10, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Disappointing! I have always enjoyed her books and was looking forward to this 'beach read' all summer. It was so short--only has 8 chapters-so there wasn't much character or story development.. Not worth it. From a former fan.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By mary anne pusey on July 10, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Was so looking forward to this read as I have enjoyed so many other Siddons writings. This did not catch me from the start. It was at times laborious to finish a chapter. Very disappointed. Just me perhaps, but naming a grown character Baby was very irritating. Onto my next read. Grateful I can put this aside.
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